• AP says: it’s “part dictionary, part
textbook, part encyclopedia.”
The Book (2)
• Sets consistent rules for grammar,
spelling, punctuation and use of
language by news organizations.
• Organized alphabetically, i.e. rules
on addresses under “A;” rules on
religious references under “R;” etc.
The Book (3)
• Many entries will point the reader
to other entries within the
stylebook for more information.
• AP Style does not necessarily
follow the standard rules of
Don’t Be Confused
al-Qaida (AP style)
• State names
• Courtesy Titles
But Wait, There’s More
• Proper Nouns
• Abbreviations & acronyms
• Directions & regions
• Is it Los Angeles (California, CA or
Calif.)? Answer: under “States
Names” = Calif.
• It is Lt. Joe Smith, but Los Angeles
Sheriff’s Deputy Holly Reed. More
under “Military Titles”
• Numbers: 0-9 = spell out; 10 and
above, use numerals
• Months, states, streets: abbreviate,
unless it has six or fewer letters
• Use the words billion/million rather
than zeros: $10 million,
Key rules (2)
• abbreviate when specific –
2842 S. Spring St.
• spell out when indirect –
2000 block of South Spring Street
• Comma (,) In a series:
Use commas to separate elements in
a series, but not before conjunctions
such as and / or:
The flag is red, white and blue.
He would nominate Tom, Dick or
Referring to People, 1
• On first reference, list the person’s
• On second reference, just list their
• 1st: Jane Kim said she enjoys
skating… 2nd: but Kim said skating
can be dangerous.
Referring to People, 2
• Do not include Mr., Ms. or titles
such as Dr. or Sgt.
• 1st: Dr. Jane Kim … 2nd: Kim said …
Here’s How …
• Know what to look up.
• And how to find it.
• Train yourself to stop and look up
any word(s) that could be
presented in varying ways: spelled
two ways, capitalized or lower
case, spelled out or abbreviated …